News / Africa

Zambia Opposition Demands Inquiry into Violent Attacks

Zambia's President Michael Sata speaks to journalists at the 18th African Union (AU) summit in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, January 30, 2012.
Zambia's President Michael Sata speaks to journalists at the 18th African Union (AU) summit in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, January 30, 2012.
Peter Clottey
Zambian opposition parties are calling for an independent investigation into violence allegedly carried out by a militia group affiliated with President Michael Sata’s ruling Patriotic Front (PF).

“We are making a demand on the police to be professional, investigate what is going on and let us know whether this government wants to govern by violence, so that we can make up our minds on how to deal with such type of a government, “ said Nevers Mumba, leader of the main opposition Movement for Multiparty Democracy (MMD).

Mumba says there is need for President Sata to address the growing attacks on opposition leaders and supporters allegedly carried out by ruling party supporters.  He also called for Mr. Sata to strongly condemn the violence.

“The role of that militia is to deal with the opposition leaders and supporters who oppose the policies of this government, and violence is what the militia is going to use.  When this issue came up we thought it was a [fake] story, but it has now proven to be true,” continued Mumba, “my supporters were beaten and some ended up in hospitals, but the police have done nothing about it, even when we gave them proof.”

Mumba says Mr. Sata will be shirking his constitutional responsibility to protect life and property if he fails to ensure the safety of his opponents.

His comments came after a Roman Catholic priest, Father Frank Bwalya, the leader of the newly registered Alliance for Better Zambia party was attacked last week at a local radio station.  Bwalya's younger brother was beaten after the assailants poured several packets of a locally brewed beer called Shake-Shake on the Catholic priest.

Bwalya says Mr. Sata is to blame for the ongoing violence.

“This governance is just bad.  It has gone to the dogs.  I am in high spirits, I am confident and if they want to kill me I will not be the first one to be killed.  The one I follow, Jesus Christ, was killed,” Bwalya said.

But a PF youth secretary, Chanda Kabwe, denied father Bwalya’s attackers were members of the ruling party.

“We condemn what happened at [the radio station], that was extremely unacceptable, but Bwalya should not drag the PF in this issue.  We do not allow any citizen to be attacked by anyone.  That violence should not be linked to the PF,” said Kabwe.

Officials of the Commonwealth Secretariat were recently in Zambia to assess the political situation, after opposition parties petitioned the organization about human-rights abuses in the southern African country.

Mumba says the MMD party is pleased with the speed with which the Commonwealth Secretariat is working on their petition.

“We gave them an updated position that nothing has improved because now we have this militia that is terrorizing members of the opposition and that we are demanding for dialogue with the government so that we can take our country back to normalcy and to a democratic state where we can debate,” said Mumba.
Clottey interview with Nevers Mumba, opposition MMD leader
Clottey interview with Nevers Mumba, opposition MMD leaderi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X

You May Like

Mali's Female Basketball Players Rebound After Islamist Occupation

Islamist extremists ruled northern Mali for most of 2012, imposing strict Sharia law, and now some 18 months later, the region is slowly getting back on its feet More

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

Many Chinese-made products go unsold, for now, with numerous Vietnamese consumers still angry over recent dispute More

Koreas Mark 61st Anniversary of War Armistice

Muted observances on both sides of heavily-armed Demilitarized Zone that separates two decades-long enemies More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Students in Business for Themselvesi
X
Mike O'Sullivan
July 26, 2014 11:04 AM
They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid